Our fall family trip to Disney was a blast!

One of the things I like to do after a vacay is pull the pictures off my phone and get them into dropbox. I have learned that if they don’t get taken care of now… it happens in a very disorganized manner later… likely do to a last minute effort to free up space on my phone. This way I can keep track of them and see a snapshot of all the fun we had.

Speaking of Fun > this trip was different than all the rest.

To preface what I am about to share with you, I make it very clear that I am NOT a roller coaster person.

I have clung to this identity since I was a child… in fact I can recall the very moment I decided roller coasters – especially ones with big drops – were a NO GO.

It was back in the 80’s… we were at Six Flags Great America near Chicago.

My parents had us in line for the Screaming Eagle – well maybe it was the American Eagle – all I remember were the screams. I think at that time it was one of the longest and fastest drops. I was not one bit excited about this ride but my parents kept reassuring me, telling me How Much FUN it would be.

Once boarded, that climb to the peak was miserable. In preparation for the drop I kept practicing how I would hold my breath and keep my eyes closed.

Just as we began the descent my best attempts to hold it together were foiled as we zoomed what felt like straight down… all I could do was scream and nearly bite into my mom’s arm. IT FELT LIKE THE NEVER ENDING DROP!

I can’t remember much more as my eyes likely remained tightly closed. Afterwards everyone but me got off the ride with big smiles and laughter. I just could not understand it, all I knew was that I was never going on a roller coaster with a big drop like that ever again.

Fast forward three decades and that has been my MO.

Roller Coaster = NO Holly. No Way!

I did well for quite some time as there were not many trips to amusement parks through my adult life. Then our family vacations evolved into trips to Disney… and then Tyler was big enough to go on the bigger rides. I could typically pass myself off as a chicken, but to Tyler it took more work. And yes, I worked at it… especially once I realized rides did not have to have a DROP to cause that feeling in my tummy – hello Mission Space ORANGE and Rock-n-Roller Coaster!!!!

It was not until THIS TRIP that I stopped and questioned myself.

Rather than allowing my self-talk to reassure my inner child that I escaped that ‘tickled tummy’ feeling yet again, I suddenly realized that this ‘escape’ was causing me to miss out on a shared experience with my son!

This did not sit right with me.

Now that Tyler is 15 I am finding I need different ways to engage and interact with him. So why the heck was I denying myself this opportunity to share the experience of a thrill ride with him?

After he and Patrick came out of ‘The Tower of Terror’ … seeing their smiles, hugs and laughter, I made a decision.

I decided to get over my self-inflicted fear and give myself a NEW chance to ENJOY the ride vs. being all anxiety ridden with my focus on getting it over with… as I have done in the past.

Get this.


I know, I am super surprised too = )

Here’s what I did.

I CHANGED the way I THOUGHT about the ride.

I thought about being open to the experience and how much fun it would be.

I kept repeating…. ‘this is going to be SO FUN!’.. over and over again with a smile.

This in turn CHANGED the way I FELT DURING the ride …. LOOK!

Here’s the side by side comparison photo from Rock-n-Roller Coaster …which I discovered can totally tickle your tummy at the take off as you go from ZERO to 60 in less than 3 seconds.

These photos are exactly ONE year apart. Not only is the expression on my FACE completely different…. my body is more relaxed!


I let GO. I stopped RESISTING!

I gave up the Death Grip in exchange for the Rock ON hand sign.

I gained the confidence to have FUN on a thrill ride AND share IN it with those I care about which equates more memories made TOGETHER.

That is ultimately what I want as a Mom.

To be IN the game of life not on the sidelines, playing chicken while watching it pass me by.

How about you?

What do you think?

Have you examined your thoughts… your self-talk?

Where are you… what are you resisting?

Have you considered how it may be impacting your choices, your behavior…. your ability to live your life…. live your life to the fullest?

In the Season of Giving… here you go. This is my creative twist to help you consider just how influential self-talk can be.

You must test it out and tell me what you discover!

To wrap up, here’s our Thanksgiving Day Family photo from Epcot just as the sun was setting. This is one I will cherish dearly as it holds many memories. It also serves as a reminder to embrace the thrills and adventures life has to offer as it only enriches the experiences shared with those I love… and supports my new focus …. to bring the joy, to LIVE the Life you LOVE!